Areas of Interest
Francesca Russello Ammon is Assistant Professor of City and Regional Planning and Historic Preservation in the School of Design. As a cultural historian of the built environment, her teaching, research, and writing focus on the changing shapes and spaces of the 20th- and 21st-century American city. She grounds her interdisciplinary approach to this subject in the premise that the landscape materializes social relations, cultural values, and economic processes. In particular, she is interested in the ways that visual culture informs planning and design, the dynamic relationships between cities and nature, and the politics of place and space.
Before joining the School of Design faculty, Ammon was a Visiting Scholar at the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. She has also held the Sally Kress Tompkins Fellowship, jointly sponsored by the Society of Architectural Historians (SAH) and the Historic American Buildings Survey (HABS). While completing her Ph.D. in American Studies, she held long-term fellowships as a Whiting Fellow in the Humanities, Ambrose Monell Foundation Fellow in Technology and Democracy at the Miller Center of Public Affairs, and John E. Rovensky Fellow with the Business History Conference.
For the past year and a half, Ammon has been a Researcher on the Mellon Foundation-funded project on “Photography and/of Architecture” at the Canadian Centre for Architecture. She is also currently a colloquium member of the Penn/Mellon Foundation Humanities + Urbanism + Design Initiative, and she is a recent past fellow of Penn’s Price Lab for Digital Humanities.
Ammon is on the board of the Society for American City and Regional Planning History (SACRPH).
Ammon, Francesca Russello. 2016. Bulldozer: Demolition and Clearance of the Postwar Landscape. New Haven: Yale University Press.
Ammon, Francesca Russello. 2015. “Post-Industrialization and the City of Consumption: Attempted Revitalization in Asbury Park, New Jersey.” Journal of Urban History 41(2): 158-174.
Ammon, Francesca Russello. 2012. “Unearthing Benny the Bulldozer: The Culture of Clearance in Postwar Children’s Books.” Technology and Culture 53(2): 306-336.
Ammon, Francesca Russello. 2009. “Commemoration Amid Criticism: The Mixed Legacy of Urban Renewal in Southwest Washington, D.C.” Journal of Planning History 8(3): 175-220.
Assistant Professor of City and Regional Planning, School of Design, University of Pennsylvania
Vincent Reina holds a PhD from USC, a BS in Urban Studies from Cornell, an MSc in Comparative Social Policy from the University of Oxford, and an MBA from NYU. His research focuses on urban economics, low-income housing policy, household mobility, and the role of housing in community and economic development. Reina was previously a Fellow at the Furman Center for Real Estate and Urban Policy at NYU, a Research Associate at the Lusk Center for Real Estate at USC, a Coro Fellow, and worked at LISC and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.
PhD Candidate, Applied Economics, The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania
Rui Yu is a PhD student in the Applied Economics at Wharton interested in urban economics, housing, and political economy. His research examines the role of interest groups in shaping urban policy and how policy in turn shapes the built environment. He received a Bachelor of Arts from Columbia University and worked in the Research Group at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York prior to graduate school.